[Beowulf] Servers Too Hot? Intel Recommends a Luxurious Oil Bath

John Hearns hearnsj at googlemail.com
Tue Sep 4 06:29:21 PDT 2012


On 4 September 2012 14:16, Robert G. Brown <rgb at phy.duke.edu> wrote:
>
> On a more serious note, one wonders why nobody has tried helium instead.
> No, silly, not liquid helium, helium gas.  The reason they fill windows
> with argon is that it has around 2/3 the thermal conductivity of air,
> and hence is a better insulator.  This, in turn, is because it is more
> massive -- conductivity is tightly tied to mass and hence the speed of
> the molecules when they have kT sorts of energies.
>
> Helium, OTOH, has six times the thermal conductivity of air, and is
> relatively inexpensive.

Helium was also used in Formula 1 wheel guns.
Wheel guns are the comoressed air tools which the mechanics use in a
pit stop to undo
and refasten the wheel nuts - the faster you can do this the faster
the car gets back out on the track.
Lower inertia means the guns were spinning faster.

http://jalopnik.com/5863687/a-farewell-to-helium+powered-wheel-guns

As this article points out, helium is a finite resource. If all teams
were using it, there would
be no advantage to any one team and it would be wasteful of a resource.
If I'm nto wrong the US Government holds the biggest stock of helium,
somewhere in a salt some in Texas.
And not more of it is being produced in the world.


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